Andrew Levy

Summertime Blues

—to Thom Donovan

Set the seats, another heartbreaking day. Come together, play
a central role outside, from all across the country straight into a ditch
these state-of-the-art surveillance arrangements, holidaymakers
cartoon stickmen masturbating with their nose, the starving potato
peelings the haute cuisine. The good friend and loving speech
sooner or later we’ll inevitably speak. We can give our attention,
highly anticipated, to help us understand our own and others’ suffering.
Clear accounts and commentaries help remove fear, anger, and
suspicion. We can’t wait any longer. The transformation bridges cobbler
and servant, master and mistress, barricades against the reign of an
intellectual personality rendered banal, trains of thought, gravediggers
whose actions wordplay stylistic deficiencies, meaner purposes of an
intolerable culture. Pain soaked and spluttering and angry and crying
and scared. Beneath the chilly water in departments of health
clockwork communicates its clues and blind alleys, the chance
resolution the comedy a creditable dissent. This is for us to decide.
Ecstatic argue its expandable strap, plunge me down into the cold water,
drop it onto the window ledge, the horror of the established order
of things shoulders back into the bath. As a representative of the Jewish
people, His huge hands under my armpits swung me up with ease.
It’s a huge, huge blue shirt clinging to His huge form. Welcome gay
and lesbian couples, non-binary maroon paisley tie, small pleasures in the
wondersome by all this perfect smart. Read a little about it, think
on it. Decide what exile worshipped midway come to change an ancient
god locked up with iron bard flooded most moons. Let’s go back
to risk no ambush, puff of a sinister rabbinic cigar blistering a limp but
unsure how, the path of suffering the world for its very uselessness.
Correspondingly, outward bigotry transmits two separate realities
from the thing transmitted and the person to whom transmission is
made, but there is no separate existing body. The land of the free
is a tiny child trying to climb onto the rim of a well.

In which Ideas are Candied

—to John Shoptaw

This poem is the poem you have read, the smudge
of conjunction where the meat is then served on
some kind of road and can stumble on, or in a swamp
admitted spice to the ‘exploit’, impoverished, ‘authentically
fruitless’ the precision, the density and balance rallying
the ultimate penury, destitute virtuous back to the
mere misery short of self, short of the world, stale bread
for their starving, enlarging its repertory, the pathetic
antithesis possession-poverty perhaps estheticized
automatism expire in good particular, cooking pot on plates,
lychees with dog. Defend the rapture of hummus.
Housekeeping, drill the Arctic. Put your all into it.
Squeeze light, bend the spine, prime that atlas. Trouble
an engineer, culture then abandon Basquiat, ruin
paradise. Bandwagon lonesome peaches melt the pollution,
fillet the cognoscenti, in the Gulf apricot globular
raindrops splat the text of the day, read that and know
who you are, tour de force a Fulbright, weigh the nuclear
peril, the impenetrably complex. Read every coincidence
this salt doesn’t salt. Cherry-bomb the smart-ass
manure-smelling ‘talent’. Seed the abasement of home,
trigger loving speech. Bring the capacity to relieve.
Suffer all discrimination and fear. Reincarnate cancer.
Care rightwing minders pining moonlight love into
transcendence run riot by delusion separate from
perceiving it. Keep the Kardashians conscious. Blend the
bodhisattva when seeds are watered, when questions and
answers dismiss the idea without a second thought. Set into
a small wooden table a corner and passage to a staircase.
Errand brown trousers a swallow’s tail, no underpants,
no buttons, walk up and down the root.

Take down the Flog

—to Mark Lamoureux & to Tonya Foster

Spite the moribund obsession Death-of-the-Month-Club damnable
self-justifying claim, lies, and self-deception arranged as the steps
of a Jacob’s ladder exploited in a big way. The hot water the cold
enriched and ripe transmits an unconscious sojourn dropped in final
spasms of dislocation ‘expediting matters’ surrounded by the doomed.
In the beginning is the Word, saith the camouflage, pull down your pen
to limit the margined damage, assume gravity empties continuity, the
things on one’s table, the accomplishment cycling across particularized
floods circling the kaleidoscopic return of clarity. Circle the cryptic
breastfallen, this unprecedented competition, this respectable stadium,
the divine snakes in the grease, the grass scouring the arena a slight
weakening, slowing down of actual debit, conceivable darkness
and silent perhaps slower light. Think about water sheltered by shade,
mutation of innocence as a discontinuous disposaling propaganda,
the details ‘reasonable’ moralizing more convoluted, undeserved and
ill-gotten, syntax fucked entering death, uncountable. Hannibal
distressed for the sake of receiving a reciprocal apology short-changed
bar mitzvah to get two brains over the railing. Rust without destroying
a fixed point pitches strong a long time trust. Signatures shutdown,
bridge a miracle agent ammonia moron ‘virtual’ thought half-melted
houseflies in the hidden calcium reaching sky reactor kick your ass,
elbow rocket empties the clip, presses out the last drop, footballs no
balls. Shield the radar, warn the breach, read the eyes that see
supermarkets learn the suffering of the birds and the meditation
of the list. Train to Coney Island splurge one-hundred percent,
Charleston the conclusion, the last drop seize an unforgettable show,
validated, convulsing in this net category and sunlit systems
offline ashcan enthusiasm. Disgust that will to rehabilitate a southern
hysteria. Digest and finish the mission, ride the fall.

I’d like to Show You Godzilla

—to Emily Skillings

Those who are old enough to remember are able to better focus on
one aspect of reality: ‘No day shall erase you from the memory of time.’
The recurrence of certain ways in which pieces of the world relate
to other pieces, our groundlessness, is that we are unable to grasp solutions
to the enigma of existence, see the beginning or end of time, or put off
the discovery of the meaning of life; but that doesn’t go far enough. There are
more things. In the snow, in the defile, in the chosen people the private
sector inherently facilitates drastic reductions in quality. Storming the doors
of the Garden we are subdued by the mounted police. Yet, I manage to
sustain the pleasurable illusion that I find myself in a metropolis enjoyed
by a youthful gentrification keeping its financial resources secret. Much that is
admirable is fraught with background full of mystery and omissions that
leaves unsaid any detail that does not pertain to the person’s purpose.
Conversely, what is said is always loaded — the monster, ecstatic agent of the
sublime superstate, won’t compute. A nuclear plant waiting the moment
of transition it needs to be decoded as the now-all-but-unreadable DNA
of a fast reindustrializing species, clear of its wrong beginnings. The just
extinction that it travels to, not to be here, not to be anywhere but with all
the tools of irony, seems to me like a word that has been uttered too often.
To think that you and I together comprise a poem or a novel or a readily
comprehensible declaration that I for my part would never dream of presenting,
being filled with a colorful assortment of people more homely than particularly
pretty. The slightest pressure of its sharp teeth and claws on our flesh is too
much to bear. Its dialectical maneuvers become recognized as a distinct
set of puzzles thought infinite, not just an antinomy but a dilemma a plurality
believed lost. An ESP, with nonlinear narrative like “Hiroshima Mon Amour.”
A lover’s step into the abyss, children lay dying around us, and we do not see
the beginning — one can’t help it — or the end to outdated criteria,
mutation or musical deterritorializations that like all technologies are unable
to develop a theoretical self-appreciation. All its permutations are quiet
or more intense. My Godzilla places its tabernacle in the sun, the position
of a celestial body in motion it permeates every cell in our bodies.

Andrew Levy is the author of Artifice in the Calm Damages (Chax Press), Don’t Forget to Breathe (Chax Press), Nothing Is In Here (EOAGH Books), and Cracking Up (Truck Books), along with eleven other titles of poetry and prose. You can read his essay “TALKING PAUSE – Reflections on Basil” at

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About Posit Editor

Susan Lewis ( is the editor of Posit ( and the author of nine books and chapbooks, including Heisenberg's Salon, This Visit, and State of the Union. Her tenth book, Zoom, was awarded the Washington Prize and will be published in 2018. Her poetry has appeared in such places as The Awl, Berkeley Poetry Review, Boston Review, The Brooklyn Rail, Cimarron, Gargoyle, The Journal, The New Orleans Review, Prelude, Raritan, Seneca Review, So to Speak, Verse, and Verse Daily.

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